The Argus

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Scouts from Dundalk, USA in town on exchange trip

The American scouts will arrive in town on Friday morning, spend a number of days in the Dundalk area, before heading up to Larch Hill in Dublin next Tuesday, Scouting Irelands National Campsite, where both groups of Dundalk Scouts will spend five nights camping together, before the Americans return home on Sunday 4th July.The local Venturers stayed in Dundalk, Maryland

The American scouts will arrive in town on Friday morning, spend a number of days in the Dundalk area, before heading up to Larch Hill in Dublin next Tuesday, Scouting Ireland’s National Campsite, where both groups of Dundalk Scouts will spend five nights camping together, before the Americans return home on Sunday 4th July.

The local Venturers stayed in Dundalk, Maryland in 2002 and were very well looked after, having the experience of a lifetime. It was Troop 354’s 40th anniversary that year and an invitation was extended to the American scouts to come and visit their Irish namesake’s town.

Venturer leader Fintan Sheridan said “It is great that our American friends were able to come and visit us this year as our Group (Unit) are celebrating our 50th anniversary. It also gives us a chance to repay some of the hospitality that was shown to us when we travelled to Maryland 2 years ago.”

A busy action packed programme is planned for the scouts when they arrive, including a day trip to Belfast and the Giant’s Causeway, an overnight visit to the Tain Holiday Village with a full days activity, and a hike in the Cooley Mountains.

Acting Group Leader for 1st/2nd/5th Louth Scouts on the Castletown Road, Gerry Finnegan, said “it was a great opportunity for scouts of different nationalities to get to know one another, and to share international camping experiences.”

The Dundalk Venturer Section (which is the group of scouts that cater for the 16–19 year olds) have had a very busy year, and newly appointed Assistant Venturer Leader Gerry Byrne says that it is something that can be built upon.

In fact Gerry and Fintan recently undertook additional training in Larch Hill to try and build on their skills and give them some new ideas. The Venturers have not only gained recognition in the Louth County Scout region this year, but have also received national recognition and thanks, for their hardwork, after helping out at the National Cub Quiz which was held in DKIT in February.

The Venturers have also taken part in many hikes including a National Snow Hike in the Mourne Mountains, weekend camps including a Survival Camp in Collon, indoor football, pool competition, raft building and team challenges in Carlingford and also helped to staff the County Campetition which took place in Ravensdale recently.

Indeed, to keep up with the busy schedule, the Venturers will depart Larch Hill on the 4th July, and on the very next day they will travel to Mount Mellary in Waterford where they will spend another week camping and hiking, and taking part in activities such as canoeing, archery, abseiling and rock climbing.

Anybody who is interested in joining the Cubs (7 – 11 yrs), Scouts (12 – 15) or Venturers (16 – 19) or indeed anyone who is interested in becoming a leader should contact Acting Group Leader, Gerry Finnegan on 087-7839649 for more information.